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New Mobo for x8 or x16 CF VS new single GPU?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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December 30, 2011 2:07:04 PM

Hi everyone,

I got a second 5770 for christmas to run in CF, but I realized after the fact that my motherboard (asus p7p55d-e) only runs x16/x4. I'm not noticing the performance increase that I was hoping for.(only about 10-15% better) I'm running an i5-750 OCed @ 3705mhz, 6gb 1333 RAM and 800W PSU.

My question is should I replace the mobo for one with x8/x8 or x16/x16 oorrrr should I sell the 5770s and get one 6970. I can only run 1360x768 but like having 8 sample AA and vsync enabled. BUT I will be getting a new monitor in the next month or so to run higher resolutions.

I'm kinda leaning towards the single card route for two reasons: 1- I'm discovering CF is a bit of a pain in the ass driver/compatibility wise and 2- switching mobos is a hassle :-p

Any input would be appreciated!!

More about : mobo x16 single gpu

December 30, 2011 2:13:35 PM

Single Card tops Dual Card in almost every way.

Go for the 6970 - they are great cards and the performance increase will be huge.

It should give you higher performance than the 5770s in SLI too.
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December 30, 2011 2:16:11 PM

CF 5770s are close to a single 5870/6950 in terms of performance, generally.

The biggest issue is that your 4x lane is probably like mine on my ASUS P7P55D Pro, in that it is running on the south bridge. This means it's actually only a 4x PCIe 1.0 slot. I have a GT 240 in mine for PhysX, and it's unable to go over 82% usage due to bandwidth limitations. A 5770 needs more than even that, so you probably can't use more than 60-70% of that cards power.

I'd say try selling the 5770s and get a single 6870, 6950, or 560 Ti.
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December 30, 2011 2:41:52 PM

a 6950/560ti or 6970 would be upgrade from the cfx 5770. your new display might even benefit from 2gb 6950/6970. in the end it depends on your budget, psu, case (6950/6970s are long cards unlike 5770).
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December 30, 2011 3:45:31 PM

de5_Roy said:
a 6950/560ti or 6970 would be upgrade from the cfx 5770. your new display might even benefit from 2gb 6950/6970. in the end it depends on your budget, psu, case (6950/6970s are long cards unlike 5770).

Many of the 6950's are just over 10". ATX mobos are 9.6" wide, so if there is at least a one inch space between the edge of the card and the HDD trays, some 6950's will fit.
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December 30, 2011 4:01:17 PM

Thanks for all the responses! I have a mid sized case, so I'll have to measure it out to see if a 6900 series will fit. Is unlocking a 6950 still an option or is that too risky?
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December 30, 2011 4:15:49 PM

afaik, only reference versions of 6950s can be unlocked..or something. and amd lasered off the later versions of 6950s so that they can't be unlocked.
besides, the whole thing is dependednt on luck.
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December 30, 2011 5:57:55 PM

yeah i agree single cards beat xfire modes.
i have 2x 6970 cards. WHen doing benchmark test xfire beats 1x gpu test the FPS actually doubles it. But when playing games its like you said, driver related. My pc runs smoother in skyrim in 1xgpu mode. with xfire mode the game doesnt run smooth.

i dont notice any other difference with cod3 and bf3 tho the game runs smooth all the way.
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December 30, 2011 6:16:07 PM

Pretty sure the Sapphire Toxic 6950 still has a BIOS switch and can be unlocked. Worth looking into anyway.
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December 30, 2011 6:52:37 PM

Thanks for all the responses; this is awesome. I'm new to the forum, but I certainly will use it again! So I think I'm set on the 6900 route (if I need a bigger case I'll grab one. My current one isn't the greatest in regards to airflow anyway).

My only other thought is about bottlenecking. I've overclocked my my i5-750 to 3.7 ghz, but I know clock speed is not the only factor, so should that be a concern?
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December 30, 2011 6:58:21 PM

Your i5 750 @ 3.7ghz won't be a bottleneck for a 6950/70.

The Lynnfield processors stick pack a hell of a punch.
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December 30, 2011 7:32:53 PM

Super! That's certainly good to hear! Thanks everyone!
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!